35 Years On, I think that “Postliberal” sums it up
I have been wondering what the standard for credibility is.
On first viewing, I at least didn't find Ford downright incredible. There were a few things going for her story. It was vague and full of holes, yes, but it also didn't have the lurid exaggerations I associate with made-up attacks. No goats, no Satan-worshipping, so to speak. It was pretty pedestrian, so banal, in fact, that the more I thought about it the more I concluded that the real reason no one ever heard about it for decades was that it was fairly trivial. On the other hand, she seemed like a fairly shattered, damaged human being. After a while, I concluded that, since Kavanaugh clearly didn't seem to have been present for whatever happened, and since whatever happened didn't seem all that earth-shattering (I don't mean it was in any way defensible as described, only that it was pretty commonplace), the only reasonable explanation was that, if she was sincere, she had been badly damaged in some other way by another person. Maybe in some completely difference experience, or at the very least in some prior experience that left her peculiarly vulnerable to an experience that no woman I know hasn't experienced worse than, without imploding psychologically.It didn't help that she giggled and cooed, or that she kept throwing around Kerry-like words like "seared" or psycho-babble words like "hippocampus" and "norepinephrine." Who talks like that? But those things mostly made me dislike her, which made me try to bend over backwards to see whether she might nevertheless be telling the truth.If Kavanaugh were more of a blank slate, I'd have had more trouble. I just couldn't square anything about her story with how he's lived his life for the last few decades, or even, frankly, with the boy scout he seemed to have been in high school. When you added her inability to specify when and where all this happened, and the denials by all the witnesses she named, and Kavanaugh's pretty good account of his general habits at the time, I couldn't believe her any more.But I knew I wanted him to be innocent, so I tried very hard to be fair.
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